Different types of

Who invented cigarettes?

Question #54839. Asked by joezhou300. (Feb 05 05 1:53 PM)

robboy

This answer has
4 votes

Currently voted the best answer In 1882, the cigarette was a specialty item - made by hand, sold for a penny apiece, and very much the stepchild of other tobacco products. But change was in the wind. An automated cigarette rolling machine, developed by 18-year-old James Bonsack, was put into use in 1883 and revolutionized production. The retail price was cut in half, and volume, which in premachine days had never exceeded 500 million, leaped to 10 billion by 1910.

1880: Twenty-one-year-old Virginian James Albert Bonsack was granted a patent for his cigarette-rolling machine.

The cigarette market was small then; cigarettes were expensive and hand-rolled by “cigarette girls”.
Most manufacturers didn’t see any use for a large number of cigarettes.
The Bonsack machine was seen and rejected by the established cigarette manufacturers.
In 1883, 27-year-old Buck Duke leased the Bonsack machine.
By 1887, once Duke and Bonsack’s mechanics had finished tinkering with it, it was capable of reliably rolling 120, 000 cigarettes in 10 hours.
This not only took the cigarette business out of the hands of the cigarette girls, it meant that cigarettes could be made cheaply enough to satisfy a mass market; but the market didn’t exist.

Buck540

This answer has
2 votes

So this guy Bonsack invented a cigarette rolling machine, but the question asks who invented cigarettes. Because the Native Americans introduced tobacco use to the Europeans, I am sure that the first very few cigarettes came from them.

Baloo55th

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2 votes

Possibly not, Buck, unless they had paper to wrap them in. Cigars are more likely, but I thought they used pipes and chewing rather more. There was at least one cigarette factory in Spain according to Prosper Merimee's story on which Bizet's Carmen is based, and that story is set in the 1820s. Cigarettes arrived in the UK in the 1850, apparently having been introduced to army personnel by the Turks in the Crimean War. Ah, got it! The Native Americans did stuff it in reeds and smoke it, but the use of paper comes from Spain and Turkey.


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